Code of Ethics
CRN and its members share a commitment to improving public health through nutrition, including the appropriate use of dietary supplements and functional food.1 In pursuit of this goal, CRN’s members pledge to observe and uphold the highest ethical principles in their dealings with their customers, suppliers, competitors, regulators and consumers in order to foster confidence in our products. In particular, CRN and its members commit themselves to the following ethical principles:
- CRN’s members are committed to marketing products that will improve the personal health of consumers and the public health.
CRN and its members should support nutrition research and education, including the role of the federal government in conducting research, on the relationships between the use of dietary supplements and/or functional food and health outcomes in order to expand scientific information and knowledge about the role of safe and beneficial dietary supplements and functional food as nutrition sources and for improving personal and public health.
- CRN and its members are committed to observing all applicable state and federal laws and regulations.
CRN and its members recognize the important role of laws and regulations, and the state and federal agencies that implement them, to assure that the best interests of the public are promoted and protected. Although CRN may on occasion advocate for changes in those laws that are inconsistent with the best interests of the public and the industry, CRN members should adhere to all relevant laws and regulations while they are in place.
- CRN members are committed to marketing dietary supplements and functional food with truthful and non-misleading labeling and advertising.
CRN members should make only those representations in labeling and advertising that are supported by competent and reliable scientific evidence to substantiate those claims; that accurately represent the findings of scientific or consumer research; and that are supported by scientifically-valid methods to verify the labeled composition of the product.
- CRN and its members are committed to taking appropriate action to support the safety of their products.
CRN members should market ingredients and products that have been demonstrated to be safe through appropriate scientific evidence and, where appropriate, evidence of safe use in previously marketed products, and should undertake additional evaluation or testing whenever new safety issues arise.
- CRN and its members are committed to responsible self-regulation to foster consumer confidence in the quality of products and the truthfulness of advertising.
CRN and its members should foster and encourage the development and implementation of voluntary standards for responsible business behavior within the dietary supplement and functional food industry and in the wider community.
- CRN’s members are committed to observing fair business practices in their dealings with consumers, the general public, and other industry members.
CRN and its members should recognize that the credibility of individual companies and of the dietary supplement and functional food industry as a whole depends upon fairness in the marketplace, with respect to individual consumers, the public at large, government agencies, state and federal legislatures, the professional and academic communities, and fellow members of the industry and its supporting suppliers.
1 CRN’s Bylaws define functional food as “any product properly labeled as a food under the federal Food, Drug, & Cosmetic Act that is formulated specifically to increase the intake of nutrients or other compounds and for which the manufacturer makes structure/function or health claims in its labeling.”
(Adopted December 2014)